Treating Wounds Caused by Cat Fights

The most common injury of cats is the cat fight abscess. These occur most commonly during the breeding season when tomcats are roaming and fighting for territory.

The injury occurs as a result of a cat fight, when bacteria present on one cat’s teeth/claws are deposited under the skin of another cat. The wound immediately closes over and the bacteria fester under the skin.

24-48 hours later, the cat will have a large, hot swelling at the site of the puncture wound. As time progresses, the swelling will get larger and the cat will run a fever. Some cats become quite ill and will go off their food. Eventually the abscess will burst leaving a smelly, puss filled wound.

Owners often think the cat has been run over, shot, broken his leg or cut himself. It is unwise to leave the abscess in the hope that it will clear up by itself. Some do, but most will recur in a slightly different place each time as the bacteria tracks along under the skin.

It is best to take the cat to the vet to have the abscess lanced, drained and treated with antibiotics.

Dr. Jyl Rubin DVM (916) 989-0738

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